This Chicken & Pasta Caesar Salad is a winner in my family. It’s so easy to make too – with minimal effort, but maximum flavour! You can use ready-cooked chicken, a bottle of your favourite Caesar dressing, ready-made croutons and even buy the parmesan shaved/grated. The most work you’ll do is cook some pasta!
Chicken & Pasta Caesar Salad
Whenever we go on holiday to America I will always have at least one Caesar salad during our stay (if not several!) and it’s definitely one of my favourite salads. It’s also my mum’s favourite, so when we had a family get-together a while back I thought I would twist things up and make not just a Caesar salad, but one with chicken and pasta, making it a really substantial dish.
I had a couple of chicken breasts in the fridge, which I cooked off simply with some olive oil, salt, and pepper by baking in the oven, then chopped down into bite size pieces. You could use ready-cooked chicken – either from the cold counter, or one of the rotisserie chickens on the cooked counter (if your local supermarket has one of those). Just remember to make sure the chicken is cooled before mixing everything together.
I cooked some spirali pasta in some salted boiling water until al dente. Use any shape pasta you like – bowties, penne, fusilli, and macaroni would all work well, just avoid long pasta like spaghetti or tagliatelle in this pasta salad. I then drained and cooled the spirali, reserving a tiny bit of the cooking water so the pasta wouldn’t dry out.
I then mixed the chicken and pasta together with chopped lettuce, parmesan cheese shavings, and Casear dressing (I like the Cardini brand – yum!). Just before serving, I stirred through some ready-made croutons and sprinkled over some grated parmesan.
Verdict? Yummed up!
As per the norm for some of my recipes, this is a bit tricky to give exact quantities of everything as it’ll depend on how many you’re feeding, and at what sort of occasion. As a side dish at a barbecue, or pot luck type event, it would serve more people than as a main dish. My recipe served around 10 people at a family barbecue.
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- 2 x cooked chicken breasts, skinless and boneless, chopped into bite size pieces
- 300g pasta shapes, cooked according to package instructions (spirali, penne, fusilli etc)
- 1 iceberg or romaine lettuce, roughly chopped
- 100g parmesan shavings
- 250ml Caesar Dressing
- 200g croutons (I used garlic and herb)
- Extra parmesan for grating on top.
- Allow the chicken and pasta to cool before combing with the lettuce, parmesan shavings, and Caesar dressing. Add the dressing in stages and combine - you don't want too much (or too little!)
- If serving immediately, stir in the croutons and grate some extra parmesan on top.
- If serving later, store the prepared chicken and pasta in the fridge till required and add the croutons and extra parmesan when ready to serve.
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